Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation

Pharmaceuticals & Vitamin D
Pharmaceuticals Vitamin D
Using Anti-Estrogens to Treat Cervical or Vaginal Cancer and Dysplasia
WARF: P09292US03

Inventors: Paul Lambert, Sang Hyuk Chung

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in developing a method of preventing and treating cervical and vaginal cancers.
More than 11,000 American women were diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2008. Treatment of this disease, which consists of surgical, chemotherapeutic and radiation therapies, costs an estimated $1.7 billion each year. And current therapeutic approaches have five-year survival rates of less than 50 percent worldwide.

Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are small DNA viruses that are associated with almost all cervical cancers. Vaccines against HPV have been developed, but their long-term effects and ability to prevent cervical cancer are unknown. Even if current vaccines are 100 percent effective, they only will prevent cervical cancers arising from infection by two of the high risk HPV genotypes, HPV16 and HPV18. The vaccines are not expected to show an impact on the frequency of cervical cancer until 2040 or later. New therapies to effectively treat or prevent cervical cancer could be of great value to clinicians and their patients.

Many individuals infected with HPV do not develop cervical cancer. Because long-term oral contraceptive use and multiple pregnancies are risk factors for cervical cancer, female steroid hormones, such as estrogen, also may play a crucial role in cervical carcinogenesis. Estrogen therefore may provide a new target for cervical cancer prevention and treatment.
The Invention
UW-Madison researchers have developed a method for treating cervical or vaginal cancer that greatly decreases cancerous and precancerous lesions in the cervix and vagina. The method involves administering an anti-estrogen, such as fulvestrant or raloxifene, to women who have been diagnosed with the disease. An anti-estrogen also could be administered to women at risk for cervical or vaginal cancer to prevent cancer development or recurrence.
  • Prevention and treatment of cervical and vaginal cancer and high grade dysplasia
Key Benefits
  • Provides a method for eliminating and reversing cancerous and precancerous cervical and vaginal lesions
  • May reduce the need for surgical treatment
Stage of Development
Treatment with the anti-estrogen fulvestrant or raloxifene eliminated cancer and dysplasia in mice that express human papillomavirus oncogenes and have pre-existing disease in their cervix and vagina. Fulvestrant also prevented onset of cancers in mice with pre-existing dysplasia.
Additional Information
For More Information About the Inventors
Related Intellectual Property
  • Chung S.-H. and Lambert P.F. 2009. Prevention and Treatment of Cervical Cancer in Mice Using Estrogen Receptor Antagonists. PNAS 106, 19467-19472.
For current licensing status, please contact Rafael Diaz at [javascript protected email address] or 608-960-9847